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Viola da gamba

Eating out with Dad

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I've checked out the "best of" thread, and haven't found an answer to this one, so I'm just going to leap in and hope. We're in Vancouver for a week in May - Jonathan & I have every intention of hitting Chambar - mmmm, venison & mussels - but my Dad, who's coming over on Friday night, REALLY hates noisy places - to the extent that he'd rather leave before an order arrives than put up with it (a fun experience it is not). As far as noisy, I'm thinking of places like the Bins, and taking into account everyone's discussion of the noise level at Chambar. He loved Cru, but I haven't seen anything on here recently about it. Please help - is Cru still good? Or is there somewhere else doing the same sort of thing (for the same sort of price) that doesn't get too noisy? Thanks, all.

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I've checked out the "best of" thread, and haven't found an answer to this one, so I'm just going to leap in and hope.  We're in Vancouver for a week in May - Jonathan & I have every intention of hitting Chambar - mmmm, venison & mussels - but my Dad, who's coming over on Friday night, REALLY hates noisy places - to the extent that he'd rather leave before an order arrives than put up with it (a fun experience it is not).  As far as noisy, I'm thinking of places like the Bins, and taking into account everyone's discussion of the noise level at Chambar.  He loved Cru, but I haven't seen anything on here recently about it.  Please help - is Cru still good?  Or is there somewhere else doing the same sort of thing (for the same sort of price) that doesn't get too noisy?  Thanks, all.

Cru is still good- Aurora is great as well-

I have found that Chambar is actually fine as long as you stick to the front part of the restaurant- it is the back area that has the really bad acoustics. He might like Parkside as well.


The sea was angry that day my friends... like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli.

George Costanza

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Cru and Aurora are excellent, and not too noisy. Others: Mistral, Parkside, Rare One, Savory Coast, and West (go early for the prix fixe and you'll save a bundle).

Acoustics aside, you're talking about a Friday night (usually the noisiest).


Andrew Morrison

Food Columnist | The Westender

Editor & Publisher | Scout Magazine

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Yes Rare is great too- I am not sure what the noise level would be like there on a Friday night. I have only been there once and it was during the week. :biggrin:


The sea was angry that day my friends... like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli.

George Costanza

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You could also try Le Gavroche or the Hermitage if your father prefers a quiet atmosphere. Cru is terrific, too.


Elizabeth

"The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook".

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I like the food at Aurora Bistro a lot, but I find it noisy. Perhaps my ears are especially sensitive but it is all hard surfaces which do not make for a quiet room.


Cheers,

Anne

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Aurora waaaay too noisy - and servers can be really irritating with older people (also have had issues with cleanliness - all those hard surfaces don't get dusted - and we have a whole new meaning for dirty martini - as one of us was served a martini that had a fly and dust floaing on the top!) Chambar is fine if seated in the front. I second the idea of Parkside - excellent food, service, reasonable prices and very quiet. Cru is still great as well.


have yet to meet a lemon tart I didn't like!

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Aurora waaaay too noisy - and servers can be really irritating with older people (also have had issues with cleanliness - all those hard surfaces don't get dusted - and we have a whole new meaning for dirty martini - as one of us was served a martini that had a fly and dust floaing on the top!)  Chambar is fine if seated in the front.  I second the idea of Parkside - excellent food, service, reasonable prices  and very quiet.  Cru is still great as well.

Lemontart,

I'm sorry to hear about your experience. I assure you that every one of our glasses get polished and our restuarant gets dusted a couple of times a week, or as needed. We strive for perfection, like anyone else who cares in this business, but sometimes we miss things. We are only human. I will look into our cleaning process and see if there is anywhere we can improve.

Was the fly a fruit fly, or a house fly? I would assume a fruit fly. The odd fruit fly does get into the sweeter liquor bottles on occassion, and in any dark busy restaurant they can end up in a drink. While not acceptable, these little pieces of pickled protien are harmless, and do not indicate that we are dirty. I hope you gave us a chance to bring you a fresh martini.

Finally, you mention that our servers can be irritating to old people. In what way are they irritating? We have many regular customers, and quite a few of them are "old"(although I'm sure they don't like being called that!). I'm sure if they were irritated they wouldn't come back. Our servers enjoy serving people of all ages, and some of our favourite customers are "old". I think if they knew that old people found them irritating, they would want to know how they could change that situation.

We thank you for your input, and would love for you to experience again, the restaurant that we are proud of and passionate about.

Feel free to contact me at 604-873-9944 if you have any more concerns.

Regards,

Jeff Van Geest

Chef/Owner

Aurora Bistro

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:unsure:

In several visits to Aurora, I've had no uninvited proteins nor noticed any cleanliness issue, and I have to say that both of my parents (over 60) have been more than happy with their dinners (and service) there; in fact, Aurora's on their short list for Vancouver visits. Sorry that your meal there was not as satisfactory as ours have been, lemontart.


Agenda-free since 1966.

Foodblog: Power, Convection and Lies

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I was a little surprised by the Aurora comments- dirty? Impatient with old people?

I have found the service their to be warm and affable, and I would be really surprised if they did not treat all their patrons like that. I would recommend the place to anyone.

I didn't notice it to be especially loud, but I am pretty loud myself, so....


The sea was angry that day my friends... like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli.

George Costanza

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Aurora waaaay too noisy - and servers can be really irritating with older people (also have had issues with cleanliness - all those hard surfaces don't get dusted - and we have a whole new meaning for dirty martini - as one of us was served a martini that had a fly and dust floaing on the top!)   Chambar is fine if seated in the front.  I second the idea of Parkside - excellent food, service, reasonable prices  and very quiet.  Cru is still great as well.

Lemontart,

I'm sorry to hear about your experience. I assure you that every one of our glasses get polished and our restuarant gets dusted a couple of times a week, or as needed. We strive for perfection, like anyone else who cares in this business, but sometimes we miss things. We are only human. I will look into our cleaning process and see if there is anywhere we can improve.

Was the fly a fruit fly, or a house fly? I would assume a fruit fly. The odd fruit fly does get into the sweeter liquor bottles on occassion, and in any dark busy restaurant they can end up in a drink. While not acceptable, these little pieces of pickled protien are harmless, and do not indicate that we are dirty. I hope you gave us a chance to bring you a fresh martini.

Finally, you mention that our servers can be irritating to old people. In what way are they irritating? We have many regular customers, and quite a few of them are "old"(although I'm sure they don't like being called that!). I'm sure if they were irritated they wouldn't come back. Our servers enjoy serving people of all ages, and some of our favourite customers are "old". I think if they knew that old people found them irritating, they would want to know how they could change that situation.

We thank you for your input, and would love for you to experience again, the restaurant that we are proud of and passionate about.

Feel free to contact me at 604-873-9944 if you have any more concerns.

Regards,

Jeff Van Geest

Chef/Owner

Aurora Bistro

Dear Jeff,

I have not been in in a while. Here is what happened the last time.

I found a lemon wedge in my beer. Although the glass appeared very clean, I suspect there might have been a hole in the bottom. On a positive note, your staff were able to keep a delicate balance of refilling so I did not really notice.

I did see some old people. I guess 80 is really the new 40. I was able to get over it. The were a bit noisy, all that laughing and enjoying themselves, and so on. Perhaps you could replace them with some sour looking Goth kids, with black hair and white faces, never a smile to be seen, silent other than a grunt when their meals come, or the "cone of silence", could you get one of those.

Let me know how it works out.

Neil " I am turning 40 soon, so I want to sit in silence " Wyles

I also will be using the phrase "Kids these days.............." all the time.


Neil Wyles

Hamilton Street Grill

www.hamiltonstreetgrill.com

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Aurora waaaay too noisy - and servers can be really irritating with older people (also have had issues with cleanliness - all those hard surfaces don't get dusted - and we have a whole new meaning for dirty martini - as one of us was served a martini that had a fly and dust floaing on the top!)   Chambar is fine if seated in the front.  I second the idea of Parkside - excellent food, service, reasonable prices  and very quiet.  Cru is still great as well.

Lemontart,

I'm sorry to hear about your experience. I assure you that every one of our glasses get polished and our restuarant gets dusted a couple of times a week, or as needed. We strive for perfection, like anyone else who cares in this business, but sometimes we miss things. We are only human. I will look into our cleaning process and see if there is anywhere we can improve.

Was the fly a fruit fly, or a house fly? I would assume a fruit fly. The odd fruit fly does get into the sweeter liquor bottles on occassion, and in any dark busy restaurant they can end up in a drink. While not acceptable, these little pieces of pickled protien are harmless, and do not indicate that we are dirty. I hope you gave us a chance to bring you a fresh martini.

Finally, you mention that our servers can be irritating to old people. In what way are they irritating? We have many regular customers, and quite a few of them are "old"(although I'm sure they don't like being called that!). I'm sure if they were irritated they wouldn't come back. Our servers enjoy serving people of all ages, and some of our favourite customers are "old". I think if they knew that old people found them irritating, they would want to know how they could change that situation.

We thank you for your input, and would love for you to experience again, the restaurant that we are proud of and passionate about.

Feel free to contact me at 604-873-9944 if you have any more concerns.

Regards,

Jeff Van Geest

Chef/Owner

Aurora Bistro

Chef Jeff

The fly was a house fly and while we were offered another martini it finally came along with our mains by which time we had a bottle of wine to go with the meal.

We were there with my mother-in-law who asked a few questions about the menu as she is on a salt restricted diet. The server was not terribly helpful and when my mother-in-law later asked for fresh ground pepper the server rolled her eyes and said" You can't have salt but you can have pepper?" and walked away. I thought this was "irritating" to say the least. We have also been there with a family friend who is in her seventies and the server was less than patient with her as well. I can appreciate that the servers are very busy, but people who are not familiar with unusual ingredients or ways of preparation often do ask questions so they can make a decision about their orders.

We have never had a bad meal at Aurora food wise - and the wine list is excellent - but others have had similar comments to mine about service, and some of them are in their late twenties which is closer to the age of the servers, so it's maybe not fair to say they are only irritiating to older people. We're not 40 yet Chef Neil " I am turning 40 soon, so I want to sit in silence " Wyles - so guess age is not our excuse for our "problem" - we only know how we like to be treated when we dine out.

Getting back to the topic at hand -- so I don't get bumped -- I would still say if you want "a quiet place for Dad" Aurora with all those hard surfaces may not be the best choice (although personally I think the decor is great especially the use of plywood - a great made in BC product!!).


have yet to meet a lemon tart I didn't like!

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.....as one of us was served a martini that had a fly and dust floaing on the top!)  

Was the fly a fruit fly, or a house fly? I would assume a fruit fly. The odd fruit fly does get into the sweeter liquor bottles on occassion, and in any dark busy restaurant they can end up in a drink.

Perhaps it was a French Fly.

I couldn't resist.

But to get back on the topic bandwagon, have you considered Bacchus at the Wedgewood Hotel? It's got that old school element - dark, cozy, quiet. Great place for hiding out, sinking into a chair and getting drunk in the lounge, a romantic dinner in the dining room or dinner with DAD. A very respectable joint. Excellent food. Just the ticket, I think.

Bacchus


Edited by shelora (log)

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We have never had a bad meal at Aurora food wise - and the wine list is excellent - but others have had similar comments to mine about service, and some of them are in their late twenties which is closer to the age of the servers, so it's maybe not fair to say they are only irritiating to older people. We're not 40 yet Chef Neil " I am turning 40 soon, so I want to sit in silence " Wyles - so guess age is not our excuse for our "problem" - we only know how we like to be treated when we dine out.

You know what. I was out of line. It was a weak attempt at humour at your expense. This forum has been accused of lots of things over the past little while and I have just added to the problem.

The fly is an actual problem. There is no debating it or chalking it up to perception. There it was, staring back at you.

We have been a little "clubby" or "chummy" and there is a perception that people are holding back some real and useful comments in order to not hurt someone's feelings or get their back up. I got a call from someone today that smashed a perception that I had about one of the people who worked for me. We all have an off day, but my staff's was a comedy of errors too numerous to mention.

A little more honesty and perhaps being more open to these types of comments will get us back on track.

Hats off to you for saying exactly how you perceived your experience to be.


Neil Wyles

Hamilton Street Grill

www.hamiltonstreetgrill.com

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Great reply Neil, can we get a reservation for tomorrow night (first timers even!)...

Vaughan

We have never had a bad meal at Aurora food wise - and the wine list is excellent - but others have had similar comments to mine about service, and some of them are in their late twenties which is closer to the age of the servers, so it's maybe not fair to say they are only irritiating to older people. We're not 40 yet Chef Neil " I am turning 40 soon, so I want to sit in silence " Wyles - so guess age is not our excuse for our "problem" - we only know how we like to be treated when we dine out.

You know what. I was out of line. It was a weak attempt at humour at your expense. This forum has been accused of lots of things over the past little while and I have just added to the problem.

The fly is an actual problem. There is no debating it or chalking it up to perception. There it was, staring back at you.

We have been a little "clubby" or "chummy" and there is a perception that people are holding back some real and useful comments in order to not hurt someone's feelings or get their back up. I got a call from someone today that smashed a perception that I had about one of the people who worked for me. We all have an off day, but my staff's was a comedy of errors too numerous to mention.

A little more honesty and perhaps being more open to these types of comments will get us back on track.

Hats off to you for saying exactly how you perceived your experience to be.

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You could also try Le Gavroche or the Hermitage if your father prefers a quiet atmosphere.  Cru is terrific, too.

Hermitage is really quiet.I was there last Valentines evening...a very busy evening and it was very quiet. The place was packed but very quiet and excellent service.

Samasutra


Never met a vegetable I never liked except well okra!

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Hi Viola DG,

My parents are in town this week and I have been taking them to places that I like that I think will suit them as well. Tonight we had a lovely meal at Aurora. My dad is a bit hard of hearing, so we went early to avoid the crowds. The music was very mellow and never interfered with our conversation, even when the place was filling up by the time we were leaving. The waitress and my dad got along swimmingly, and she was very good natured about his goofy prairie guy sense of humour. He asked her for a sugar substitute for his tea, and she was happy to oblige.

Mom and dad were very impressed with the food and it was lovely to see them unwind, relax, and enjoy themselves as the sun finally made an appearance illuminating the cherry blossoms accross the street and casting a warm glow over the restaurant. We all loved Jeff's White Spring Salmon Pastrami, served under a potato salad and topped with a quail's egg. The tranluscent cut of fish packs a wallop of flavor in each bite, and this amuse had precisely the right amount of salt to make it harmonized and complete.

Anyway, I will post more details tomorrow about this meal and others I'm enjoying with my parents on this trip. Right now, I've got to go help a guy with long fuzzy ears to do his annual job.

:wink:

Happy Holidays!


"I used to be Snow White, but I drifted."

--Mae West

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Nice report.

Right now, I've got to go help a guy with long fuzzy ears to do his annual job.

I hear you. Hoppity hop. :wink:


Andrew Morrison

Food Columnist | The Westender

Editor & Publisher | Scout Magazine

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Wonderfully quiet restaurant - Amarcord, a little Italian restaurant in Yaletown. I think Parkside is great, too.

Just a little note about the service at Aurora - as much as I understand the impulse to protect one of your own, it's true that honesty here can be really constructive. I believe the warmth of the service at Aurora depends hugely on who is serving you there. I've only been a couple of times, but it's a small room, and if you feel like when you are sitting in a restaurant that you wish you got the other guy as your server, then there's something to that. However, I had very competent and efficient service both times, and I wouldn't hesitate to go back (but it's a much different feeling from going back to either Amarcord or Parkside, or say, Guu, where I feel like I'm almost guaranteed warmth).

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Really?

This is the best in BC...

Yawn.

Wow ~ Save your $ and go to Seattle and eat at Oceanaire.

Very chummy and generic list (yawn). I would rather eat a sock then visit the listed spots (I cannot call them restaurants), with the exception of Nu, C, West, Diva, Il Gardino, (review to follow...).

Its true...the Western Canadian thread does suck...


To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art La Rochefoucauld

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Looking forward to the review.

Have a look upthread at the criteria for the restaurants discussed above.

Yours, sucking...


Andrew Morrison

Food Columnist | The Westender

Editor & Publisher | Scout Magazine

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Lets get serious and open this up...

Take dad to bin 941 and light him up!

The bar at Gotham!

Stella on main (but early)

..or better yet, as this thread is leading. Go to Mc D's...it is the best value for the dollar in the lower mainland...and always quality/to expectation.

(edit...I have no veener on my desk!!)


Edited by cubilularis (log)

To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art La Rochefoucauld

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Really?

This is the best in BC...

Yawn.

Wow ~ Save your $ and go to Seattle and eat at Oceanaire.

Very chummy and generic list (yawn). I would rather eat a sock then  visit the listed spots (I cannot call them restaurants), with the exception of Nu, C, West, Diva, Il Gardino, (review to follow...).

Its true...the Western Canadian thread does suck...

:huh:

Enjoy your socks. More good food for the rest of us (and our parental units). Nothing against C, West, Diva, Il Giardino, or Rare (I haven't eaten at Nu), but I fail to see how eating hosiery of any sort could be preferable to Parkside or Aurora Bistro.

Of course that's not really my fetish. :wub:


Agenda-free since 1966.

Foodblog: Power, Convection and Lies

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